Leeds United manager Marcelo Bielsa

Noel Whelan has urged Leeds United to tie promising right-back Bryce Hosannah down to a new and improved contract at Elland Road.

The former Leeds striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, insists that the defender looks to have a big future at the club and expects him to quit on a summer free if he doesn’t get a better deal.

As revealed by the 20-year-old’s father in an interview with the Yorkshire Evening Post, Leeds turned down offers for the full-back during the January transfer window, including a “firm offer” from Scotland.

The youngster has just a couple of months left on his current contract, having put pen to paper on a two-year deal back in 2018.

Whelan insists the former Crystal Palace starlet holds the cards in negotiations but that Leeds need to do what they can to get him to commit to new terms.

Whelan told Football Insider: “What it does probably do is put him in a very strong position to demand that little bit more.

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“When a club’s asking for you and wanting to sign you on a free contract, it gives the parents, the player and the club something to think about.

“You can’t let young players go too quickly, even when they haven’t really stepped up to the first-team level yet, this is why you have an academy system.

“The fact he’s wanted by other clubs and has been doing very well in the under-23s shows that somewhere along that line in the future, probably not too far away, this player will become a very important player to the football club.

“It’s important we tie him down but it’s important that we also recognise he is wanted by other clubs and the deal he does get, if we want to keep him, is a fair one.” 

Hosannah is yet to make his debut for Leeds, although he was an unused substitute against Huddersfield earlier this season.

In other Leeds United news, Whelan believes a 21-year-old has played his last game for the club.